Surah Yusuf Ayat 35 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 35
Then it appeared to them after they had seen the signs that al-‘Azeez should surely imprison him for a time.
Then it occurred to the men, after they had seen the signs, (that it was best) to imprison him for a time.
Then it occurred to them to cast Joseph into prison for a while even though they had seen clear signs (of Joseph’s innocence and of the evil ways of their ladies).
Then it appeared to them, after they had seen the proofs (of his innocence) to imprison him for a time.
And it seemed good to them (the men-folk) after they had seen the signs (of his innocence) to imprison him for a time.
Thereafter it seemed good to them even after they had seen the signs, that indeed they should definitely imprison him for (Literally: till a while (had passed) a while (of time).
In the end they thought it best, after seeing all the signs of his innocence, that they should imprison him for a while.
Quran 12 Verse 35 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Yusuf ayat 35, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(12:35) Then it occurred to them to cast Joseph into prison for a while even though they had seen clear signs (of Joseph’s innocence and of the evil ways of their ladies).
30. It occurred to them to imprison Prophet Joseph in order to save face after they had seen clear proofs of his innocence and of the guilt of their own women, for no other alternative was left, in their opinion, to undo the scandal that was spreading fast in the land. But it did not occur to them that in fact his imprisonment was his moral victory and the moral defeat of the rulers and the dignitaries of Egypt. By that time, Prophet Joseph had not remained an unknown person, for all and sundry had heard stories of his beauty and piety, and of the love the ladies had shown towards him. Therefore when those wise courtiers put into practice their plausible device to imprison him in order to reverse the doings of their ladies, the common people must have drawn their own conclusions for they knew Prophet Joseph to be a man of pure, strong and high character. So it was obvious to them that he had committed no crime to merit imprisonment, and that he had been imprisoned because it was an easier way of escape for the chiefs of Egypt than to keep their own ladies under control.
Incidentally, this shows that imprisonment of innocent people without trial and due procedure of law is as old as civilization itself. The dishonest rulers of today are not much different from the wicked rulers who governed Egypt some four thousand years ago. The only difference between the two is that they did not imprison people in the name and for the cause of democracy but they committed unlawful acts without any pretext of law. On the contrary, their modern descendants make use of the specious pretenses of honesty when they are acting unjustly. They first enact the necessary unlawful laws to justify their unlawful practices and then lawfully imprison their victims. That is to say, the Egyptian rulers were honest in their dishonesty and did not hide the fact that they were imprisoning people to safeguard their own interests, and not those of the community. But these modern disciples of Satan cast innocent people into prison to ward off the danger they feel from them, but proclaim to the world that their victims are a menace to the country and the community. In short, they were mere tyrants but these are shameless liars as well.
35. Then it occurred to them, after they had seen the proofs (of his innocence), to imprison him for a time.
Allah says, `Then it occurred to them that it would be in their interest to imprison Yusuf for a time, even after they were convinced of his innocence and saw the proofs of his truth, honesty and chastity.’ It appears, and Allah knows best, that they imprisoned him after the news of what happened spread. They wanted to pretend that Yusuf was the one who tried to seduce the `Aziz’s wife and that they punished him with imprisonment. This is why when the Pharaoh asked Yusuf to leave jail a long time afterwards, he refused to leave until his innocence was acertained and the allegation of his betrayal was refuted. When this was successfully achieved, Yusuf left the prison with his honor intact, peace be upon him.
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